U.S. employers add 271,000 jobs – The Labor Department reported that U.S. Employers added 271,000 non-farm jobs in October. It was the most robust job growth in 10 months which caught experts by surprise after 2 months of disappointing job growth, and a weak third quarter GDP growth figure released just last week. Experts expectations were 150,000 jobs so 271,000 blew analysts away. The unemployment rate fell to 5%, its lowest level since April 2008. Even more positive was wage growth which has been below the targeted growth rate desired by The Fed. Average hourly wages were up 0.4% in October from September. For the last 12 months wages are up 2.5% from last October.
Stock markets rise for a 6th straight week of gains – Stocks have recovered nicely from the market’s steep slides in August and September. That slide was termed a “correction” which is defined as a drop of 10% or more. The sharp rebound was fueled by strong 3rd quarter corporate earnings by U.S. Companies which beat expectations and positive signs in Europe and Asia. Those included economic stimulus to boost their economies like the measures we took during the recession. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed the week at 17,910.33, up from last week’s close of 17,663.54. The S&P 500 closed the week at 2,099.20, up from last Friday’s close of 2,079.36. The NASDAQ closed the week at 5,147.12, up from last week’s close of 5,053.75.
Treasury bonds yields rise after job report shows robust growth – A very strong jobs report showing that the economy added 271,000 jobs, almost double what analysts expected, caused investors to fear that The Federal Reserve would raise interest rates at the December policy meeting. It will be the first rate increase since 2006 if The Fed follows through. Even if they do raise rates experts believe that they won’t go too high or rise very quickly. Rates on bonds and mortgages rose after the jobs figures were announced. The 10 year Treasury bond yield closed the week at 2.34%, up from 2.16% last Friday. The 30 year treasury bond yield closed Friday at 3.09%, up from last week’s close of 2.96%.
Mortgage rates inch up slightly this week – The 30 year fixed rates are around 4.00% for loans up to $417,000, and around 4.25% for loans over $417,000. The 15 year fixed rate loans are about 3.375% for loans up to $417,000, higher loan amounts have rates that are around 3.5%. 5-Year ARM and 3–Year ARM rates are both around 3.125%.
Have a great weekend!
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